Dells answer is to upgrade to their (Dell A22) bios.
However running this update fails "cant update when supervisor password is set".
So the catch 22 is, you can't update the bios because the bios pwd is set, and you cant get into the bios to remove the bios pwd!!!
my question is, does anyone know how to get to bios entry screen, using some other method (my thought was, this should be possible from debug using a jump or goto "bios address", the question is what address).
I had also thought of using a killcmos type program to invalidate it.
I also have an image of the phoenix bios that should be in the machine.
I'm just loath to flash it if there is something in the hardware that prevents it being flashed when the pwd is set.
I have tried other methods such as removing the hd, changing the memory config. neither of these creates a config change which enters the bios.
This is apparently a common problem with the 5100, there are many reports of this on the dell web site and the A22 flash usually corrects it. but it wont run in this case.